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Guidelines For Purchasing Playground Equipment

by Roger Neugebauer
May/June 1998
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/guidelines-for-purchasing-playground-equipment/5012176/

Child Care Information Exchange Guidelines for Purchasing Playground Equipment

Purchasing playground equipment is one of the biggest decisions you will make. Not only does it involve committing a fair chunk of your center's resources but it also will impact children's outdoor experiences for a decade. To help you make a wise decision, Child Care Information Exchange has surveyed the playground equipment manufacturers and sellers listed at the end of this article for their purchasing advice. Hopefully, the following suggestions will inform your research. In addition, we recommend that you supplement your research by interviewing other center directors about their experiences with various products and vendors.

In comparing pieces of playground equipment, a primary consideration is the quantity and quality of activity made possible by each piece. In other words, how much play value do you get per dollar?

A good piece of equipment will make possible many different activities or play events. It should facilitate a wide range of age-appropriate activities. There should be a balance among active, imaginative, and social play. Activities should enhance both gross and fine motor development.

Finally, a piece of equipment must be fun for the children. If children don't enjoy playing on a structure, they won't use it, and ...

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